With Cooper Webb still on the sidelines with a fractured tibia and fibula, Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing were in need of a fill-in rider for the first part of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross series. Rather than go for a proven rider they, surprisingly, picked up a long-time privateer, Alex Ray. Ray just completed Monster Energy Supercross for CycleTrader Rock River Yamaha and had no plans for the outdoors.
"It is a dream come true to even be considered to ride for the Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing team," Alex Ray said in a press release. "I believe that with this great team and amazing bike I can really do some damage and have solid results in the Pro Motocross Championship. I have got some testing to do with the bike before lining up, but I am confident that we will be super comfortable leading into Glen Helen."
Justin Barcia will be the only Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing rider at Hangtown, as Alex Ray will continue to grow accustomed to factory machinery before making his debut at the second round a week later. The deal will also take him through rounds three and four, then the situation will evaluated.
Words: Lewis Phillips | Lead Image: Monster Energy Media/Octopi